Exploring the food market in India
One of the best things about staying at the Indian Summer House in Kerala was the Chef Rajish. I felt so confident eating anything that this guy prepared. He had such a passion for his cooking and was so happy when we enjoyed the meals he prepared. And I have to say I enjoyed all of them.
The Indian Summer house offers exclusivity to its guest which means the chef can meet all your needs as he will only be cooking for you or your group which in itself is pure luxury how often can you say you get to have your own personal Chef. Not only this but Rajish is an amazing chef, he puts together flavours that will have your drooling and begging for more.
Food at Indian Summer House
I am not a huge fan of spice and I would say a little less spicy next time and he would do this for me. One of the guests had food allergies and he was so considerate about these and would prepare special meals for her and tell her what she could and couldn’t eat when it was shared meals.
The highlight of my stay had to be when I went to the market with Rajish to pick up some ingredients for our evening meal. The market in Muvattupuzha, Kerala was like no other I have ever visited. I do try and visit local markets on my travels as it is one of the best ways to see local life.
This market was not pretty and it didn’t smell good but people were selling and buying so the products had to be good. Nothing was set up attractively it was basically tubs and crates full of produce.
Trip to a Indian Food Market
We piled into the Vintage car that the Indian Summer House uses to do their shopping, it was even cool just driving around in a car like this. The challenge was actually to get the car started but after a few of the staff tinkled under the bonnet the engine roared alive and off we went.
First stop was the local coconut oil manufacturer they had a really old fashioned machine that they used to squeeze the oil out of the coconuts, they were so friendly and showed me around, the aroma was intense, it was a great experience to see how they could get vast amounts of oil from these coconuts.
The owner of the Indian summer house came with us; he is from Australia so as the only 2 white faces at the market we did get quite a bit of attention. I was also the only female. It wasn’t hostile attention quite the opposite, the vendors were so proud of their produce and wanted to show it to us.
When we visited the fish stall the man kept getting all his fish out as I had my camera out and he kept saying film film it was so cute. Then the next stall holder called us over and showed us some prawns he had. They did not get offended when we didn’t buy what they were selling but just wanted to show us everything they had.
There were so many different types of fruit and vegetables that I had never seen before. I have to admit I didn’t like all the flies on some of the fruit but luckily our chef didn’t buy any of these as I think it would have put me off slightly. The market was about a 20-minute drive from the villa and the owner explained his in laws (whose home has been extended into the Indian summer house) would not know about this market as they would only shop very local to their residence.
When we got out of the car we were greeted with the smell of fish and rotten fruit which wasn’t pleasant but to walk around and look at all the wonderful produce was amazing. At one of the stall that was selling fruit they had avocado. Apparently this is not often seen in this area so the chef was quite excited to see it, I don’t actually like avocado so luckily he didn’t give it to us for our evening meal.
I couldn’t see any prices and obviously didn’t really know what was being said but people were just asking for how much they wanted it was weighed and a price was paid. Very simple.
This was such a cool experience and it was nice that the Chef felt he could take the guests to the market so you can get a true sense of the food you are eating. If you would like to go to the market with this great chef I would highly recommend staying at the Indian Summer House so you can experience some cool trips like this.
Medicine Man in Kerala
We had a few more items to get and went into the town. Some of the shops are like a tardis. I was feeling a little unwell so Chef took me to a Medicine Man. The shop resembled an old fashioned household shop that had everything you could think of.
There were shelves filled with cooking equipment, toys, fabrics and spices. It seemed utter chaos except when someone came in and asked for something the assistant went straight to the item so there much have been some sort of logic in their layout. They even had bananas, well I think every shop I went in had bananas as I have a slight phobia of the horrible smelling fruit seeing bananas everywhere was not the best part of my shopping experience. It wasn’t the cleanest of places and in the middle of the shop sat this little old man who people were queuing up to see. They told him their ailments and he gave orders to his assistant who would then mix a potion from different bottles.
When it was my turn I sort off pointed to my tummy and went OW!! Chef explained in Indian what was wrong with me and I got a lovely tasting brown concoction. I was actually surprised that it did taste nice, it was a little herbal and spicy, reminded me of cough syrup. I had 2 doses and my stomach complaint cleared up so I didn’t take anymore. I was kind of wary drinking something that I had no clue what ingredients it had but to be honest it cleared it up. Apparently he was the best medicine man in the area and people go to him rather than the local doctor.
Come back soon to read more about my adventures at the Indian Summer House and of course find out about this truly luxurious villa in South India.
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